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Clin Infect Dis. 2012 Jul;55(2):259-64. doi: 10.1093/cid/cis359. Epub 2012 Apr 11.

Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine for adults: a new paradigm.

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Pfizer Vaccines, Collegeville, PA 19426–3982, USA.


A 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine has been studied in adults aged ≥ 50 years to compare the immune response to that induced by the 23-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine, which has been the standard of care over the past 30 years. The results demonstrate that adults, regardless of whether they are naive or previously vaccinated with the polysaccharide vaccine, have an overall superior antibody response when vaccinated with the conjugate vaccine compared with the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine. More importantly, the nature of the response is indicative of a T-cell-dependent response that elicits immunological memory and, therefore, primes the immune system for either natural exposure or subsequent booster vaccination with either conjugate or polysaccharide vaccine. The conjugate vaccine, which has been successful in reducing pneumococcal disease in children, now provides a new approach to preventing pneumococcal disease, including community-acquired pneumonia, in adults.

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